Kenzo Tange was a Japanese architect and winner of the 1987 Pritzker Prize for architecture. He was one of the most significant architects of the 20th century, combining traditional Japanese styles with modernism, and designed major buildings on five continents.

“I feel, however, that we architects have a special duty and mission… (to contribute) to the socio-cultural development of architecture and urban planning.”

1. St. Mary Cathedral | Kenzo Tange

Swooping steel-clad walls support the cross-shaped roof window of Kenzo Tange’s 1960s St Mary’s Cathedral in Tokyo. Located in the Bunkyō district, the cathedral was designed by the Japanese architect to reference the lightness of a bird and its wings.

2. Shizuoka Tower

Built in1967 in the Ginza district, the Shizuoka Tower gave Tange a chance to materialize his Metabolist ideals, which called for a new urban typology that could self, perpetuate in an organic, vernacular, “metabolic” manner.

3. Tokyo Olympic Arena

 Built for the 1964 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo, Japan, the Yoyogi National Gymnasium has become an architectural icon for its distinctive design.

4. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

Memorial park in the center of Hiroshima, Japan. It is dedicated to the legacy of Hiroshima as the first city in the world to suffer a nuclear attack and to the memories of the bomb’s direct and indirect victims (of whom there may have been as many as 140,000).  Work on Peace Centre Commenced in 1950.

5. Fuji Broadcasting Centre | Kenzo Tange

The Fuji Broadcasting Centre is a 27-story complex in Koto, Tokyo, with a total height of 123.45 meters (405.0 ft) designed by Kenzo Tange. Opened in 1996.

6. Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower

Mode Gakuen Cocoon Tower is located in Tokyo’s distinctive Nishi-Shinjuku high-rise district, the building’s innovative shape and cutting edge façade embodies our unique “Cocoon” concept. Embraced within this incubating form, students are inspired to create, grow and transform.  Built-in 2008 by Kenzo Tange.

7. Kuwait Embassy in Japan

Built-in 1970, the visual cue of Metabolism is often the module-look or assorted-boxes-look of the building. It was a 1960s urban experiment in design, well before the invention of Jenga.

8. Tokyo Metropolitan Government Building (Tokyo City Hall)

The New Tokyo City Hall Complex replaced the 1957 Tokyo Metropolitan Government Office; the tops of the towers are irregularly shaped to lessen the effects of Tokyo winds. Built-in 1991, in the postmodern style, the design idea was based upon a Two-towered Gothic cathedral, after Notre Dame in Paris.

9. Nichinan Cultural Centre, Nichinan

Completed in 1962, Kenzo Tange created a crystalline internal space by opting for polygonal wall structures. The powerful concrete volumes are also homage to the cliffs on the coasts in the region. Here, concrete seems to be “second nature”.

10. Kagawa Prefecture Gymnasium | Kenzo Tange

Completed in 1964 in Takamatsu, Japan, Kenzo Tange designed the Kagawa Prefectural Gymnasium with a Brutalist approach. The Gymnasium doesn’t believe in architectural context or establishing relationships with the surrounding buildings, but rather the surrounding buildings renovate to match the Brutalist gymnasium.

11. Yamanashi Broadcasting and Press Centre | Kenzo Tange

It was designed by Kenzo Tange for three media companies: a newspaper printing plant, a radio station, and a television studio. To allow for future expansion Tange grouped the similar functions of three offices together in their zones. Opened in 1966, the structure is designed for three media companies in Kōfu, Japan: a radio station, a television studio, and a newspaper printing plant. All of the services are inside the 16 reinforced concrete columns.

12. Shinjuku Park Tower

It was completed in 1994. Shinjuku Park Tower is a single building consisting of three connected block-shaped elements; S tower, which is 235 m (771 ft) tall with 52 stories, C tower which is 209 m (686 ft) tall with 47 stories and N tower which is 182 m (597 ft) tall with 41 stories.

13. Singapore Indoor Stadium

Construction began on 1 January 1985, it has a cone-shaped roof and a pillarless arena. It was completed on 1 March 1987 and officially opened to the public on 1 July 1988.

14. Kagawa Prefectural Government Office

This project, built by Kenzo Tange in the time period of 1954- 1958, marked a turn in Japanese post-War architecture in terms of the materials used and the overall direction: The imported International Style is eschewed in favor of a return to the Japanese wood-building tradition, whereby this is executed completely in concrete here..

15. Kenzo Tange House | Kenzo Tange

House built in 1953, The so-called Kenzo Tange House was considered pioneering, as it fused together elements of traditional Japanese architecture with modern-day rituals. However, it was later demolished.


Vibhuti Dev is a student of Interior Design At INIFD Bhopal, India. She's worked as a Designer for a Cafe in Bhopal while she was doing her diploma in Architecture.